S. Korea seeks to encourage direct communication between Trump, Kim

Posted May 25, 2018

North Korea claimed to be surprised and "full of regret" at President Donald Trump's decision to cancel the planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore.

"We even inwardly hoped that what is called "Mr Trump formula" would help clear both sides of their worries and comply with the requirements of our side and would be a wise way of substantial effect for settling the issue", he said, without elaborating.

In a statement by Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan released to KCNA news service, North Korea still wants to meet with the Trump administration saying, "we are always willing to provide time and opportunity to the United States with a generous and open mind". "We'll see what happens - it could even be the 12th". "Some day, I look very much forward to meeting you". We'd like to do it.

"Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have the long-planned meeting", Mr Trump said in a letter to Mr Kim.

But in a remarkable announcement at the White House, on March 8, a top South Korean official announces that Kim will "refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests" and has invited Mr Trump to meet him - and that Mr Trump has agreed.

North Korea had sharply criticised suggestions by Mr Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, and Vice President Mike Pence that it could share the fate of Libya if it did not swiftly surrender its nuclear arsenal. "North Korea summit. We tell the United States once more that we are open to resolving problems at any time in any way".

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In recent months, Trump had traded his bellicose threats of "fire and fury" for bouquets of flattery, calling Kim "very honorable" and exuding confidence that he could seal a deal that had eluded his predecessors for generations.

North Korea's reaction was subdued and conciliatory.

North Korea says that, unlike Libya, it is a fully fledged nuclear state.

Nauert said the administration is wary of heading into a meeting without knowing that something concrete will come out of it. Nauert said she wasn't aware of whether the Trump administration is now in direct contact with Kim Jong Un's government.

Kim said the U.S.' decision to cancel the upcoming talks demonstrates how serious the animosity between the North and the US remains, which he said underlines the urgent need of a summit between the leaders of the two countries. Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was deposed and killed by NATO-backed militants after halting his nascent nuclear programme.

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Following years of tensions, South Korea's hosting of the Winter Olympics in February 2018 gives the neighbors a window to reopen communications, ushering in a spectacular Korean detente.

But many felt the Trump administration was rushing into a summit too quickly, with insufficient preparation. "President Trump can blame North Korea's hostile rhetoric for his decision, but the reality is that the Trump administration had no unified diplomatic strategy from the beginning".

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday that North Korean officials had stopped communicating with US officials in recent days.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in said he was "very perplexed" and that it was "very regrettable" that the summit was not going ahead. "Another camp may try to use this as evidence that diplomacy is doomed to fail, and that denuclearizing North Korea by force - attacking a nuclear weapons power - is the only remaining option".

"Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the establishment of permanent peace are historic tasks that can neither be abandoned nor delayed", Yonhap quotes Moon as saying.

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